I am a guitarist and composer, originally from Riga, Latvia, currently living in The Hague, The Netherlands.
Slow Lightning, my latest record, was published on February 17, 2022. You're welcome to listen to it in the -releases- section. Recorded during the last three months of 2021 - at home, on tape, and allways way past midnight, it is the first installment of Pains And Boogies. In edition of 100 cassettes+digital the album was published by dis ce que.
In this music I work particularly with the forms of early blues and ragtime. The results are seemingly old sounding yet entirely newly written - surprisingly lively stuff that is fun to play! In this music I am curious to find how (if at all) these historical materials might meaningfully reemerge at the current point in time. If this seems a bit musicologially dry, that's ok. This type of thinking process takes place only someplace along the edges anyway.
photos at the top: me performing at the online concert Primitive Field as captured by Dustin James on his livingroom wall.
Below, some third-person writing about my previous lives in music for the extra curious…
Edgars Rubenis emerged on the underground scene in mid-2000’s as the member of Riga’s experimental rock band Mona de Bo. Often considered to be one of the most vital forces on the Baltic scene of the ensuing decade, this ensemble has released 5 albums spanning psychotic indie garage, collisions of free improv and noisy drone rock. After the intense experimental guitar period with Mona de Bo and in an abrasive solo practice, Rubenis moved to The Netherlands in 2012 to study sonology and composition at the Royal Conservatoire in The Hague.
Prior the experimental turn, Rubenis was a teenage blues-head guitarist in Driving South, an exhilarating blues-improv trio making waves in the Baltics around the turn of the millennium. In this period he also received first hand exposure to legendary players during repeated visits to blues festivals in Norway – first row seat at Buddy Guy’s concert, faraway corner of Duke Robillard’s backstage, and in jam sessions with Oslo’s young greats of that time. A meeting with David Evans in Riga proved to be of unexpected importance thanks to the direct-lineage insights about Mississippi John Hurt’s music shared by the renown delta blues scholar and musician.